Gregor Townsend, the Scotland national rugby team’s head coach this week signed a new contract extension with the SRU which will see him lead the national squad until at least April 2026. After a successful Six Nations, including an historic win at Twickenham against England, Townsend will now lead Scotland into his second World Cup after taking the team to Japan last time around.
Before you start checking that you haven’t ventured onto the wrong website, there’s a simple explanation for featuring Gregor Townsend this morning and it’s Celtic related. He’s actually been out at Lennoxtown, visiting Ange Postecoglou and watching the Celtic team train. Lunch with the Celtic coaches followed before spending a few hours in the Celtic manager’s company discussing shared experiences in Japan, coaching and management and folk from Australian rugby that both the Scotland Head Coach and the Celtic manager know.
Townsend has been talking about this and it’s an interesting insight that’s worth sharing. After speaking about his new deal with Scotland, which was in doubt and he already had alternatives lined up over in France, Townsend turned his attention to his recent trip to Lennoxtown to see what he could learn from the way Celtic go about their business. And the Scotland rugby coach was certainly impressed by what he saw and how he was welcomed.
“It was good. I watched them train, they were very welcoming,” Gregor Townsend, as reported by The Scotsman. John Kennedy, Gavin Strachan and Harry Kewell had lunch with me. Ange had met me before training and then I went to his office for a couple of hours’ chat about coaching philosophy but his coaching journey too.
“We had a lot of mutual experiences. He has coached in Japan, we’d had the World Cup in Japan in the same area, Yokohama, where he was coaching. He knew a lot of Australian rugby coaches that I know well.
“So it was great. Just getting his philosophy on when he comes to a new club and what he’s looking for. It was good, you pick up things, even picking things from their training – maybe things in the back of your mind get re-ignited.
“And I believe you take similarities away. They’ve got a game that they believe in and we’ve got a game that we believe in as well. It’s high-paced attack, it means that the guys have to be skilful, fit, and accurate. When you can get those things right, you can cause the opposition problems.”
That will be the egg-chasers from Murrayfield on the blacklist over on FF!